England Saxons draft in Saracens coach
ESPN Staff
November 27, 2013
Saracens coach Paul Gustard, November 6, 2011
Paul Gustard will help the Saxons during January © PA Photos

Saracens coach Paul Gustard will work with the England Saxons for their internationals in January.

Gustard stepped in for England as defence coach for their summer tour to Argentina while Andy Farrell and Graham Rowntree were on British & Irish Lions duty. And he will continue working with the Rugby Football Union at Saxons level where he will join Jon Callard's Saxons coaching set-up.

Joe Lydon, the RFU's head of international player development, will preside over the Saxons set-up and welcomed Gustard's appointment. He said: "Having him on board adds real value to our programme for two important matches, in terms of both continuity from the summer and in closer integration with Aviva Premiership clubs, players and coaches."

The RFU has also confirmed Nick Walshe and Ian Peel have been reappointed to lead England's Under-20 side through 2014. Lydon added: "It's also good to confirm that Nick Walshe and Ian Peel will continue developing the Under-20 group throughout the Six Nations and then take side to New Zealand next summer where we're defending our world title.

"They helped lead England to success in France last summer - aided by Jon Callard and Simon Hardy - and the tournament win was the culmination of a huge effort from all of the management staff and players combined. We know that, like the Saxons, the Under-20s is a key component in the international player development pathway."

England Saxons Fixtures:

  • January 25: England Saxons v Ireland Wolfhounds (Gloucester, 5pm)
  • January 31: Scotland A v England Saxons (Glasgow, 7.30pm).

England head coach Stuart Lancaster welcomed the news, saying: "Having worked with Paul Gustard last summer I know the energy and expertise he will bring to his role with the Saxons and I'm looking forward to see Nick Walshe and Ian Peel build on their success this year.

"The Saxons and Under-20 programmes play a key role in the development pathway. They are part of a bigger landscape that includes Under-18 coaches John Fletcher and Peter Walton as well as professional player development manager Alun Powell, the Aviva Premiership academies and the England Sevens programme run by Simon Amor and Damian McGrath.

"Together they are all preparing the international stars of the future and the senior coaches will be watching them closely in the coming months."

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